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Understanding alcohol abuse

A children's storybook aimed at helping young people to understand parental alcohol misuse has been launched by charity Alcohol Focus Scotland.

The book, Rory, is aimed at children, teachers, counsellors and social workers, and centres on a dog who doesn't understand his owner's behaviour until it is explained that the owner has a problem with alcohol.

It was originally published in Switzerland by the Swiss Institute for the Prevention of Alcohol and Drug Problems and has now been translated for use in Scotland.

There are an estimated 100,000 children in Scotland who have at least one parent dealing with an alcohol abuse problem.

Jack Law, chief executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland, said: "As well as making sure people with alcohol problems receive appropriate treatment, we also need to protect the children of problem drinkers so they don't feel alone or confused about their parent's behaviour. Children need support to understand that they can't stop their parents drinking, only they can do this and they have to want to change."

Nicola Barry, journalist and author of Mother's Ruin, said: "I only wish there had been something similar around when I was growing up with an alcoholic mother. I might not have wasted so much time and energy feeling guilty and responsible, when, all the time, nothing I could have done would have stopped her drinking."

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